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Jaipur Literature Festival 2014: Even more reasons to visit Jaipur this winter
Wednesday, January 8th, 2014

By Sudha Mathew

Striding into its seventh year, festival director and award winning author William Dalrymple describes Jaipur Literature Festival as the world’s largest free literature festival. An impressive collection of creative personalities from different fields and nations, the Jaipur Literature Festival 2014  (JLF) celebrates excellence and diversity in literature.

Jaipur Literature Festival 2014
Jaipur Literature Festival

Jaipur Literature Festival dates 2014

Generally held in the wintry month of January, this year’s edition will be held from 17 to 21 January 2014 at the Diggi Palace in Jaipur.

What’s on the cards at Jaipur Literature Festival 2014?

In its seventh year, the organisers have chosen History, Science and Technology and Vibrant Rajasthan as leitmotifs. Interesting themes but challenging too. Take history. Filtering out the right amount of topics with historic significance, without compromising on the sentiments and values of the subject, is a mammoth task in itself. Incidents ranging from events of Stalingard to the 26/11 attacks in Mumbai, from the much speculated life of Jesus to the rise and downfall of Vijayanagara, all find place on this podium.

William Dalrymple and Alexander McCall Smith at JLF
William Dalrymple and Alexander McCall Smith at JLF

The list of Speakers at Jaipur Literature Festival 2014 can be reviewed on their website. Since it is a long list, here is our pick – Top 5 sessions at Jaipur Literature Festival 2014.

  1. Australia-based noted historian, Peter Stanley in association with authors Maya Jasanoff and Geoff Dyer will discuss the 100th year of First World War and the role played by Indian Subcontinent in the warfare.
  2. Gloria Steinem, a key Women’s Lib figure and feminist in conversation with Ruchira Gupta on The Essential Gloria Steinem
  3. Taiye Selasi’s debut novel, the New York Times bestseller Ghana Must Go, has been sold in 16 countries and heralded as a “once in a generation debut.” In 2013 Selasi was named to Granta’s prestigious list of Best of Young British Novelists. She will be introducing the session on Three Women, Three Africas.
  4. An illustrious panel with Antony Beevor, Katherine Boo, Geoff Dyer, Rana Dasgupta and Reza Aslan, moderated by William Dalrymple on The Non-fiction Renaissance.
  5. An equally acclaimed panel of Amartya Sen, Oscar Guardiola-Rivera, Xiaolu Guo and Rana Mitter moderated by Dipankar Gupta on Who Will Rule the World?

Big Names, Popular Authors and Celebrities at Jaipur Literature Festival 2014

Jhumpa Lahiri, Gloria Steinem, the controversial Reza Aslan and Amartya Sen are internationally recognised literature stars. From the India lit scene, the noteworthy names are Amish Tripathi, Jerry Pinto, Vikram Chandra and Anita Nair. It is not JLF without the usual quota of Indian celebrities so you can also look forward to seeing producer Ekta Kapoor, actors Irrfan Khan and Naseeruddin Shah, Page 3 celebrity Raj Kundra and sports hero Mary Kom. To add to the diversity, there are even a few Indian politicians as speakers.

Kiran Desai and Orhan Pamuk at JLF
Kiran Desai and Orhan Pamuk at JLF

Book Launches at Jaipur Literature Festival 2014

“Capital” by Rana Dasgupta

“File Room” by Dayanita Singh, to be released by Geoff Dyer

“Nazar Photography Monographs 02 – When Abba was ill” by Adil Hasan

“Travails with Chachi” by Louise Khurshid, released by Shashi Tharoor

“Gone with the Vindaloo” by Vikram Nair, Book release by Suhel Seth

“I, Me and My Plays” and Odiya edition of “Dance like a man” translated by Manu Dash

“In the open Sculptures of KS Radhakrishnan” by Johny ML, presented by Ojas Art

“Idris Keeper of the Light” Somnath Batabyal

“Jaipur Gem in India” by Dr DK Taknet

“Nav-Matdata  Ek Rajnaitik Prayog Ki Anubhav Yatra” by Jyoti Kiran

Salman Ahmad at Jaipur Literature Festival 2013
Salman Ahmad at Jaipur Literature Festival 2013

What else about Jaipur Literature Festival 2014?

Centred in one of the most historic cities of India, the locale itself sets the mood. Not only book lovers and publishing houses, but trade professionals and international agents also add to the bustle of the fest.

The Jaipur Bookmark, an new initiative by the Jaipur Literature Festival organisers is a platform for publishing professionals from India and around the world at Narain Niwas, Jaipur, from January 18th to 20th, 2014, in parallel with the Jaipur Literature Festival. About 100 publishing firms are invited to Jaipur.

Norway comes in close collaboration with the festival. Norway participates as the official country partner through NORLA: Norwegian Fiction and Non-Fiction Abroad.

Where to stay in Jaipur?

We have a wonderful collection of heritage hotels in Jaipur ranging from budget to luxury. Send us an enquiry to book convenient accomodation for Jaipur Literature Festival 2014.

Samode Haveli Deluxe room four poster at Jaipur
Samode Haveli Deluxe room four poster

Any other tips to explore Jaipur?

Make sure you have atleast a couple of days before or after JLF 2014 to explore the city’s vibrant culture and heritage architecture. And shopping in Jaipur is a definite yes made easier by our insider guide.

Hawa Mahal at Jaipur
Hawa Mahal at Jaipur
A Rajasthani scene that you could see during your JLF visit
A common Rajasthani visual


Jaipur Literature Festival is on my wish list. Are you going this year?




Image Credit:

JLF images via Twitter courtesy Abhishek Madhukar and William Dalrymple and Jaipur Lit Fest

Hawa Mahal courtesy Himalayan Trails

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Posted by Sudha at 6:08 pm
    Comments ( 1 1)
  • Roopa Majithia

    January 16, 2014

    go and seed JLF 2014

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About me

The wise man travels to discover himself - JR Lowell


My name is Sudha Mathew. I'm an ex-banker who quit the rat race after a decade to follow my passion for travel and to combine it with my experience in understanding client requirements and exceeding their expectations.


While our content is mostly about the holiday experience, the accommodation and services, there's so much more to a journey. I have discovered a whole new me through travel. So I've reserved this corner of the website to share the unexpected aspects of travel. This space is also to hear from you about your journeys and discoveries. Bon Voyage!

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